Sixth & I Downstairs
600 I Street Northwest
Washington, D.C., 20001
Doors 6:30 PM / Show 7:30 PM
Kevin Devine is an American songwriter and musician from Brooklyn, New York, who is known for alternately introspective and political lyrics and melodic acoustic guitar tunes. He cites his influences as Bob Dylan, Elliott Smith, Guns N' Roses, Brother Paramo and Nirvana, among others. He grew up in Brooklyn and Staten Island, and has spent significant time in Manhattan and Queens as well. Devine graduated Fordham University at Lincoln Center in 2001, majoring in journalism. He also played in an indie/punk/emo band called Miracle of 86 after the (Miracle) New York Mets. Even before that, he played with a popular band in the local Staten Island scene called Delusion. At Fordham he was able to hone his acoustic solo skills by playing at various open-mic and college events which made him very popular among the student body.
During this time he also appeared in regular stints at the Wetlands Preserve. Although still relatively unknown, Devine gained some popularity with his 2003 album, Make the Clocks Move. Newer songs reflect Devine's political views and the recent death of his father to a stroke. He has recorded records for Immigrant Sun Records and Triple Crown Records and has worked with Brooklyn based producer Mike Skinner, who is also credited as the drummer on his solo records as well as the drummer for Miracle of 86. He signed with Capitol Records, who released his fourth album, Put Your Ghost to Rest, on October 17, 2006. Only four months after his major label debut, Devine was dropped from Capitol Records due to EMI merging Virgin and Capitol Records.
Devine was able to gather a strong fan base as a result of his exposure through touring with Brand New. First appearing as their opening act in their 2004 spring tour, Devine made a small splash among their fan base. However, opening for them again in April 2006, and joining their 2007 Spring tour with Manchester Orchestra, Kevin's following was multiplying by the day. (Kevin also opened for Brand New as a surprise act at the Triple Crown Records 10th Anniversary Concert.)
Devine's late 2007 touring schedule included a tour with close friend Jesse Lacey (of Brand New) and Grace Read at the end of July through early August, followed by a short trip to London, a spot on the Austin City Limits Festival, and a tour with Chin Up Chin Up throughout Germany. In October 2007 he toured with Andy Hull from Manchester Orchestra and Owen.
Kevin posted numerous demos via his MySpace profile in late 2007/early 2008 and after negotiations with Capitol records, "Put Your Ghost To Rest" was re-released on April 20, 2008 by Procrastinate! Music Traitors.
Kevin toured Europe with Jenny Owen Youngs and Tournaments in May and other tours followed throughout 2008 with Jesse Lacey, Rachael Yamagata and Matt Pryor in August and September 2008.
In late 2008, Kevin announced his new album Brother's Blood would be released in early 2009 on Favorite Gentlemen records, as well as a tour with Manchester Orchestra and the I Could Be With Anyone EP in support of both.
Threads – the second full-length release from Minneapolis based Now, Now – explores the fragile and often transitory nature of our existence, our perceived understanding of the world around us and relationships shared with others physically and emotionally. Produced by Howard Redekopp (Tegan and Sara, An Horse, New Pornographers), Threads forms a sprawling sonic endeavor that showcases the bands incredible growth as songwriters and musicians. Vulnerable vocals give way to oceans of sound retaining definition via deftly layered guitar parts augmented by lingering synths which alternate between background and center stage.
This past June, Now, Now, a trio composed of Cacie Dalager (Vocals, Guitar), Jess Abbot (Vocals, Guitar), and Brad Hale (Drums, Synth) packed up their van and drove 1800 miles across North America to record with Redekopp in Vancouver, BC. Beyond the geographical shift, the recording felt miles removed from their full-length debut Cars. Released in 2008 prior to Abbot joining the band, Cars saw the fresh out of High School Dalager and Hale traveling the United States non-stop and finding their way onto European arena tours. Through word of mouth and constant touring, Now, Now (formerly Now, Now Every Children) began building a support system of fans and friends, including Maine native, Abbot. Hale and Dalager quickly became fans of the music Abbot was making in other bands; "It was kind of funny because she and I used to make jokes about how in an alternate universe we would probably be in a band together," recalls Dalager. "We had a practice where she played for us the parts she had written for songs off Cars, recalls Hale. It was apparent from those sessions Abbot could bring something to Now, Now. "Her guitar work is amazing," says Dalager, "and just adding another creative brain into the mix was refreshing for us."
Soon enough, Abbot relocated to the Twin Cities to become the third member of Now, Now Every Children, sharing equally in songwriting and vocal contributions. Dropping "Every Children" from their name, Now, Now began working on the Neighbors EP, an experiment in writing and recording for the first time as a three piece. Though the original plan was to self-release the EP, it found a home at No Sleep Records, who encouraged the band to tour through the first half of 2011.
It was during this time another relationship formed during the years following Cars began to grow. Chris Walla, guitarist/producer of Death Cab for Cutie, had taken an interest in the band's music. "From the very first time we had contact with him," explains Hale, "he was always excited and positive about things." Support from an artist they admired musically and personally proved inspiring to Now, Now. At SXSW 2011 Walla came to each of their shows, helped them lug gear and even talked a police officer out of giving them a parking ticket. With mutual admiration all around, it was natural for Now, Now to sign to Walla's Trans- Records. "In working with Chris and his label," explains Abbot, "we've been given a lot of freedom to make sure we're happy with the music. We run at a slower place as a band, and he's not pushed us, but instead given us our time. It's nice to have that from somebody who could probably sign any number of bands, and make them do what he wants."
With a true sense of purpose and excitement they hadn't felt in years, Now, Now made the trip to meet with Redekopp to record Threads. "What people will specifically notice about the songs on Threads," says Hale, "is the way that they are put together. We spent a lot of time going through the basic song ideas and restructuring them to make them their best. Since we haven't released a full-length in so long," he explains, "we wanted to make sure we were all loving everything about it before we went all the way out there to record." Between recording and tracking at three studios in Vancouver, the band would hang out with Redekopp at his house or watch him hit the half pipe at a local skate park. "He became an extended member of the band;" explains Dalager, "he got inside our heads and understood everything we were going for." During the recording Now, Now could tell they were hitting their stride for the first time. "As happy as we are with Neighbors," Abbot says, "a lot of things didn't click because we were just learning how to write together." Dalager notes, "We killed ourselves over Threads. That sounds dramatic, but everything about it was excruciating in a good way. Every little idea was worked to its best." As a result, "this is the first release we feel really proud of."
With the album complete, Now, Now look to the future with great anticipation. "This band feels like an extension of us as people," explains Dalager. "It's something we've been nurturing for a long time and is all we really care about;something we've worked really hard for and need to make happen no matter what."